Today the Church celebrates the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. When we consider the atrocity of crucifixion, especially in light of the brutality happening in our world today, it is incredible that something intended to instill fear and reek of death was transformed into the symbol of our faith representing hope and life.
We adore You, Christ, and we bless You, because by Your Holy Cross You have redeemed the world.
Lift high the Cross!
What God has done with the Cross, He can do with any of the circumstances of our lives. No matter how bleak, horrible, hopeless, painful, unfair, unjust, evil - God can transform it to work for His good. He doesn't will these bad things to befall us; but He uses them, He transforms them, into something that can transform us.
While I don't believe that it is God that brings us to these trials in our lives, I do wholeheartedly believe that He can give us strength and wisdom to endure them - whatever that endurance may entail.
Furthermore, Jesus asks us to take up our crosses and follow Him. He asks us to submit, as He did, to God's will for our lives. Truly, He leads us up the hill to Calvary and into complete servitude on the Cross.
The Law of the Gift tells us that it is there - on that hill, on our cross, in total obedience - that we will find our true selves.
God can transform one of the most cruel styles of execution into a beacon of hope, strength and life. Imagine what He can do for you, someone made in His image and likeness, if you will but follow Him.
Not just up a hill. Not just on a cross. But, all the way to new life in Him.
As educators, our entire enterprise involves transformation. We transform students from ignorance to intelligence. We transform them from misbehavior into virtue. We transform them, as Catholic educators, from disbelief into faith.
We create lifelong habits of hard work, responsibility, kindness, and service that is inspired by belief in God and strengthened by academic wisdom.
As we transform our students, we push back the dark and transform the world.
In order to do either, though, we must first be transformed ourselves - by our God, because of our passion for what we do, and out of love for our students. Don't underestimate the God you follow.